Last Friday I listed 10 of my 41 fave Bajans who I believe have made a contribution to the development of our nation, and here are 10 more faves:
Professor Henry Fraser - Whether he's showing off the architectural treasures of Barbados, urging Bajans to eat healthy or orating the accomplishments of those awarded National Honours, Professor Fraser puts his best foot forward. As Dean of the School of Clinical Medicine and Research, he's at the forefront of the battle against the dreaded chronic non-communicable diseases and we could all do to heed his advice.
Professor Hilary Beckles - Say what you like about the Principal of the UWI Cave Hill Campus Professor Beckles, you have to admit that under his guidance the Campus has undergone a remarkable transformation. Government needs to put him in charge of capital projects....
Dalton "Jackie Opel" Bishop - Spouge/R&B singer extraordinaire Jackie Opel died before I was born, but I grew up hearing his hits You're No Good, Every Word I Say Is True, Eternal Love and his megahit Cry Me a River. Before his tragic death at the young age of 32, Jackie Opel toured regionally and internationally and his songs appeared on US and UK labels. He was a prodigy gone far too soon.
Jeannette Layne-Clark - A prolific writer of novels and stage plays, Jeannette Layne-Clark is the talent behind popular productions such as Dumplings in The Stew. Skilled at capturing the dialect and vernacular of Barbados, Layne-Clark would be the go-to person if we ever got around to developing a lexicon for Bajan dialect.
John "Foo Foo" Walcott - Painter, actor, comic. John Walcott's talents seem endless. Perhaps best known for his roles as the idiot savant "Foo Foo" in the Laff It Off stageplays and feisty security guard "Tubby" in tourism commercials, Walcott is a comic gem.
Joseph Niles - Legend Joseph Niles is to gospel what Sparrow is to calypso in the region. With over 25 years in the business of gospel music, Joseph Niles is long overdue for a major national award.
Krosfyah - Although it has undergone its fair share of changes, the soca band Krosfyah has consistently produced quality music since its debut in 1989. Frontmen Edwin Yearwood and Khiomal have also had successful solo careers, but Krosfyah's talented guitarist and songwriter Anthony "Tony Rebel" Bailey deserves a lot more of the spotlight.
Mac Fingall - Mac Fingall is proof that at times it pays to play the fool. Comedian, entertainer, mascot and super MC, the name Mac Fingall brings a smile to the faces of most Bajans. And Lord knows we can always do with some more things to smile about.
MADD Entertainment - I have a lot of respect for MADD Entertainment. They've parlayed what most people would consider "mekking sport" into a viable business venture, and they never miss a beat when it comes to marketing their shows or DVD's. Happy 25th Anniversary, guys and gals.
Sister Margaret Marshall - Like Joseph Niles, Sister Marshall is a stalwart in the gospel arena. Her music has an appeal that cuts across generations and I fear we take her and Joseph Niles for granted. Give them their sweets now, powers that be, and leave out the posthumous sweet sentiments!